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-   -   Flying in France (incl Permits, Private sites and Pictures) (https://www.pprune.org/rotorheads/216659-flying-france-incl-permits-private-sites-pictures.html)

sycamore 2nd Apr 2003 01:18

Flying in France (incl Permits, Private sites and Pictures)
Any body care to pass on any info. about flying a helo around France.(UK REG)
Is there a list of approved helisites/lz`s/, or can one land anywhere with owners permission,etc.
Done a search, and tried the Fr. CAA site ,but no Joy?Syc.:rolleyes:

Hilico 2nd Apr 2003 02:08

I remember that Pilot magazine had an article about a group of helos flying round France, but it was several years ago and I can't even remember the date. However, you could try their site I suppose.

Helinut 2nd Apr 2003 02:58


My recollection is hazy but I believe that there are considerable restrictions in France about off-airfield landings. One of the French Government Departments issues (after considerable delay) a helisurface permit (or something like that). This authorises you to make off-airfield landings but I think you are supposed to contact the local mayor for each landing.

As you can see, my memory is not perfect, but some years ago I planned a trip similar to yours and was pointed down this route.

I hope someone else can firm up on these issues for you. Perhaps a French pilot/operator could assist?

John Bicker 2nd Apr 2003 04:37

Habilitation a Utiliser les Helisurfaces
Prefecture de police

Direction de la Circulation, des Transports et du Commerce.

Delivree conformement aux dispositions du Code de L'Aviation Civile (Art.D. 132-6 et de le l'arrete du Mai 6 1995 relatif aux Aerodromes et autres emplacements utilises par helicopteres.

In a nutshell:

Yes it takes a while to get.

Must be processed in Paris.

You may have to prove you have no criminal record.

Is valid for 10 years.

The basic concept is that you shall inform via fax prior to use of limited or unlicenced helisurfaces in addition to PPR from the owner and/or operator. Then when someone complains they already know who you are! Welcome to France. Do not operate without it unless you enjoy visits from the CRS. ( The questions come later types)

For assistance contact Nigel Watson Heli-Riviera - Brit located at LFMD. http://www.heliriviera.com/ He did offer a service to obtain one for you.

Otherwise France is as helicopter friendly or more so than anywhere else. They have a large helicopter manufacturing industry as well so..........

cyclic flare 2nd Apr 2003 16:56

I've flown several trips through France and i do hold a Heli Surf Certificate. I have landed at several off airfield locations, Chateau's etc and have never been asked a single question. In my opinion the French are a lot more relaxed than they are made out to be, there are airfields everywhere all much better equiped than English fields. The flying is great just be careful of the military corridors they are difficult to see on the charts.

sycamore 2nd Apr 2003 18:35

Thanks guys for the gen,but one last question ,or two. Is the certificate for a named person,and specific reg. a/c, or can it be a company blanket cover for pilots and a/c; and does it cover specific areas or general?
thanks again , Syc.

cyclic flare 2nd Apr 2003 20:25


My Heli Surf is simply in my name and lasts for ten years. They take about 3 - 6 months to arrive once applied for. I believe you need a miniumun of 250 hours to be granted one

headsethair 2nd Apr 2003 23:16

Try www.aero-checkpoint-charlie.com for details about Burgundy.

latecomer 3rd Apr 2003 01:43

I am a Brit based in France, where I've done all of my helicopter flying (including the training). Just to say most of the above is correct - although just to be precise, the permit or 'carte' is named and for a physical person (not a company) and you do not need to prove that you have no criminal record (I guess they look for themselves). As far as I am aware, there is no minimum time required to qualify for this permit (I had less than 100hrs). It is obtained from the Préfecture de Police in Paris, and is valid for all French territory.
Again, to be precise, you then fax warning of each landing at an off aerodrome location (before the landing, even 1 hour before) and must have written permission of land owner.
Apparently, this exists to help protect against criminal activity using helicopters (smuggling, prison escapes, etc.).

sycamore 3rd Apr 2003 01:59

heli fly in France
Thanks all once again for the gen. on the paperwork trail; one last question, ; tel.nos, and addresses would complete the picture, or a copy of the form?

Head Turner 3rd Apr 2003 23:28

Does anyone know the official direct contact to obtain the heli surface permit? Is it through the French Embassy in London? I would appreciate the details as I am sure others who are contemplating a flight to France would benefit.

rotorspeed 4th Apr 2003 02:50

I must say I've flown around France many times over the last 15 years and landed at private sites (mainly hotels) on I guess 50 occasions over the years. In the past I have never had the landing permit and have never even been asked for one, let alone had a problem. Nevertheless I did think I ought to get one and sent off the forms about 9 months ago. Still haven't heard back!

I may well have just been lucky all the time. Perhaps those who have been asked to produce the permit could let us know!

Head Turner 4th Apr 2003 17:44

Anyone any news for me? Re my previous enquiry.

sycamore 4th Apr 2003 21:55

OK guys, i have got a tel.no in Paris and have just spoken,in Franglais/phonetics,to request un dossier," habilitation de utiliser les helisurfaces". Tel .no 0033-153-71-45-23( or 35-73).I await the post.!;)

Howlin Mad Murdock 7th Apr 2003 06:06

Just got back from Paris today- We took six ships out to Issy Helliport yesterday which is in the centre of town. two R22s,an R44, a 206, an Allouette and an EC120. spent the night in Paris and took a leisurely flight back this afternoon. The French controllers were all extremely helpful especially at Issy. Total cost for an R22 landing and 24hrs parking about thirty quid- Which, when you compare the service at Al Fayed Field is quite incredible.
Still he's got to pay for his flight to switzerland somehow i suppose....
Would recommend it to anyone.

cyclic flare 7th Apr 2003 06:42


Prefecture de Police
9 Boulevard du Palais
75195 Paris RP

Tel 01 53 71 53 71 0r 01 53 73 53 73

I think i phoned to get a fax number, then wrote requesting an application form. complete the form and return it. You should get a reply about the time your next ECG is due!!!

Hope this helps

sycamore 23rd Aug 2003 07:16

transit down France
May have to go to the S of France shortly, and was looking at routing via Pontoise,Nevers,Valence,Aix, Nice/Cannes.
Anyone got any helpful hints, Customs, lunch-break,toilets to avoid,poss. stop in case of bad wx.
Iknow there are other direc routes, but this may be with pax. so1/1/2 hrs is probable bladder dep.
Also , are there any heli-routs around Nice/ Cannes ,/ areas to avoid etc. I did know a few of the fried-egg beaches, but it`s a bit more blue -rinse now !!
Any suggestions much appreciated.

MBJ 23rd Aug 2003 07:25

I always routed via Troyes - Grenoble and through the mountains. I must have done that 6 or 7 times and never had any weather snags. Very attractive route and not many people you have to talk to.

Troyes is a total sleepy hollow but has Jet A1, the old town is lovely if you need to nightstop.

Grenoble (St George) has a slick little restaurant on site.

Try to find someone with the French section of Bottlang. Every airfield has its routes, especially for helis, and it has quite a good chart for the South Coast and its routes.

212man 23rd Aug 2003 09:14

I'd agree: Aix isn't really on the way to Nice and the area around Marseille is pretty crowded/busy. Depending on your range, I once did Gatwick to Dijon for refuel then Cannes via Grenoble overhead for another fuel stop. As said, quiet traffic region and spectacular scenary. If range is limiting then stopping at Troyes and Grenoble should make for a pleasant jaunt.

STANDTO 24th Aug 2003 20:45

I don't know, here we are in the Isle of Man trying to hold things together, and you are swanning around in continental Europe now.

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